It is a great honor to showcase this week's author spotlight. She's a fellow author and a fellow CSA survivor. Show your love to my Sister & friend Trish Kay Lleone.
My name is Trish Kaye Lleone
and I am from the Philippines. On January 29th of this year, my
memoir-based book, Finding Anna, was published and made available on
Finding Anna tells about my own child sexual abuse and abandonment
story. More than that, it tells about how I have learned to cope from my
own traumatic experiences. For almost thirty years, I have lived behind
the shadows, suffering and dealing with the pain and nightmares on my
own. Being raped multiple times by various men - some of whom are family
members - is not an experience that is easy to share even with your
closest, dearest friend. However, for as long as my 'secret' remains
hidden, the more I felt strongly about self-destructing.
I wrote the book initially without the intention of getting it
published. I have read from abuse websites that writing it down helps
abuse victims find healing and therapy. That was all I wanted - to heal,
to find peace, comfort and to let go of the pains that I had been
carrying on my back.
The decision to publish Finding Anna was not an easy one to make. I
spent sleepless nights dealing with my own fears. What if my predators
read the book? What if my family read the book? What will my friends say
if they find out about my story? The questions just went on and on in
my head for days until finally I knew I no longer want to be a victim. I
want to be a SURVIVOR.
In October 2013, I submitted the manuscript to Firebrand Publishing for
publication. It was the best decision I have ever made.
My journey made me realize that being a victim doesn't end after the
abuse. It goes on for as long as the victim cowers in fear, hides behind
shadows and lives in secrecy. Until one steps forward, acknowledges the
reality of his or her traumatic experience and take steps to find
healing, he or she remains a victim. Survivors are not survivors because
they remained breathing, living and functioning despite the abuse. They
are survivors because they took that one brave, bold step and faced
their circumstances and did something for it to stop and for their
spirits to heal.
My prayer is that Finding Anna will encourage child sexual abuse victims
to do the same - heal their spirits and find comfort for their souls
through their own God-given skills, talents or gifts. Maybe you cannot
write a book, but you can sing, or dance, or paint, or teach... Whatever
it is that you are gifted with, use it to help other abuse victims and
to prevent more children from becoming victims.
I live in a country where stories such as mine are regarded as taboo.
Where family name and honor is very important and that one small scandal
would be absolute disgrace to the whole clan. Where poverty is in every
nook and cranny. Where there are corrupt people in the seats of power.
Often, cases of child sexual abuse are unreported due to these factors.
In the last fifteen years, there had been a few high profile child abuse
cases that had rocked my country, but even then there are still
pedophiles loitering our streets, corrupting our children and molesting
innocent bodies. Women and children's rights advocates are slowly
getting tired of fighting because of the lack of support.
Perhaps, if more abuse victims would come out, report to authorities and
seek help, this will all change. May Finding Anna be the spark plug
that would encourage children, women and even men who had suffered from
sexual predators to come forward and create change and awareness.
Finding Anna: A Memoir: A True Story of Child Sexual Abuse can be
purchased via Amazon.Com (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I4WPDJO)
Follow Trish Kaye Lleone on Twitter @zheyrhumbee
or her website: www.trishkayelleone.com